Silverthorne prepares for Pride Month celebrations, featuring drag show with local officials

Artist Andy Moran paints the new mural on the Blue River bike path in Silverthorne. The town will host its first series of Pride Month festivities this weekend.
Eliza Noe/Summit Daily News

Silverthorne will have its first series of Pride Month events this weekend to celebrate LGBTQ members of the community as part of the county’s two-day celebration. 

Starting on Thursday, local volunteers and artists began painting the new Pride Month-themed mural that will be on the bike path along the Blue River. Like the river directly next to it, the mural’s two winding rainbow features twist down the bike path with the Progress Pride Flag — the common six-color rainbow flag with an incorporated chevron to represent minorities, trans people, and those living and killed by AIDS — capping the ends. Local artist Andy Moran, who painted the murals in Frisco last year, began arriving to work on the mural at 8 a.m. each day to work on it. On Saturday, visitors are invited to lay their handprints leading to the mural, adding a community connection to the piece, he said. 

“It’s called Connected Diversity,” he said. “It’s because it really is about trying to connect the community, and what better way to connect to communities than to allow the community to be a part of the artwork. It’s great for adults, but it’s especially good for children because it gives them an early sense of pride in their community.”

Artist Andy Moran paints the new mural on the Blue River bike path in Silverthorne in preparation for the town’s first Pride event.
Eliza Noe/Summit Daily News

Beginning on Saturday morning at 9 a.m., LGBTQ residents and allies are invited to pride-themed yoga at The Pad in Silverthorne, which will feature music from queer artists during the session. From noon to 4 p.m., various events and mural painting will continue at Rainbow Park followed by a charity drag show from 7-10 p.m. featuring local performers and a turnabout drag show — where nonprofessionals put on drag — featuring local celebrities such as Rob Baer, co-founder of The Pad; AJ Brinckerhoff, owner of Angry James Brewery; Craig Simson, director at Lake Dillon Marina; Dillon Mayor Hunter Mortensen; Dillon Police officer Chris Scherr; and bartender Duane Boily.

Abbey Arlt, digital media director for The Pad, said that the team had conversations with organizers of last year’s activities about what programming could be hosted in Silverthorne. Soon enough, a day’s worth of activities was planned for Saturday. Coincidentally, she added, The Pad is on Rainbow Drive. 

“Sometimes, pride feels a little performative, so we recognize that it’s more than changing your logo into a rainbow. And we recognize that it’s more than just a day of partying,” she said. “While these events can be fun, they can show support, connection and acceptance. There’s still such an intense fight for equality, and we recognize that. We want to not only do what we can but also support the nonprofits and the other organizations that are actually actively doing things that maybe we’re not aware of.”

Last year, members and allies of Summit County’s LGBTQ community gathered to share their love and support at the county’s first pride march, and Arlt said that she hopes, this year, residents of Summit County can further expand pride across the county. 

“It shows some really strong support and acceptance and plays into the theme of connection,” she said. “That’s really what the whole day’s activities are about, for us and for the Summit High Equity Alliance Club. We want the LGBTQ community up here to feel like they have a community to feel like they’re not outsiders — to feel like we’re all integrated. There’s a lot of support and acceptance here.”

On Sunday, pride events will continue on Main Street in Frisco for a Pride Parade at 11 a.m.

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